One of the cooler services you can offer new students is a view of their new “neighborhood.” …which in collegians’ cases, includes both campus and the town your campus resides in. (This works even during summer orientations!)

What’s more, you have the opportunity to start students with a spiritual view of your campus or city – showing them where the need is greatest, where the opportunity is highest, where the churches and ministries meet, where they can serve and make an impact.

And where they can get great burritos, of course.

A tour can be a great recruitment tool: Offer it to all new students, and you’ll get the chance to connect over a couple of hours.

This gives an opportunity to provide lasting resources: A map you’ve designed, books or mp3s they can learn from, a printed intro to your ministry and its upcoming events. Even an article or two on “doing college.”

Would school admin or city leaders or ministry leaders make a cameo on your tour? Maybe. Could you get local establishments to offer free tastings or coupons to get students to return? Sure.

But when it comes down to it, this is a chance to serve students, love your campus or city, build relationships with students, and lend them lenses with which to see their new environment. If you pull this off and do it well, it could jump-start students (and your ministry) like little else could.